Artificial Intelligence

Why your business needs an OCR and what it can do for you

While we live in an almost exclusively digital world, there are physical elements to business that are inescapable. Every organization has had to take on the tedious task of migrating traditional data sources into a digital format at one point or another. This process is time-consuming, often inaccurate, and by no means a failproof method of preserving vital information. And even if you’re able to scan documents, you won’t be able to edit or change them in any way. This presents an issue for many businesses. Well, at least those businesses who haven’t invested in OCR technology.

OCR stands for Optical Character Recognition, and the concept of text images being converted into code can be traced back as far as the first world war. But it was in 1980 that it took its quantum leap in its application when Ray Kurzweil sold his OCR patent to Xerox, which saw its potential for digitization. It has often been remarked true innovation is timeless, and with the rise of AI and machine learning, it’s a tool that continues to provide incomparable value. For now, the idea of a paperless business is almost unthinkable, and there will always be a need for physical resources in whatever form they take, which is why there is still a massive demand for document scanning OCR. Let’s get into some of the primary reasons for its success and why it’s so essential to almost any business in the modern age.

What is an OCR?

Let’s start with the basic definition of an OCR. Broadly speaking, OCR is an automation tool for data extraction from printed or written text and images before converting it into a machine-readable format that can be edited and searched. Using both hardware and software in tandem. Hardware to physically scan documents and software to read and process them. In its most advanced form, it utilizes AI for intelligent character recognition for more complex tasks like handwriting styles and different languages. At PROVEN Solution, our AI and ML capabilities mean we can go beyond the usual expectations of an OCR to provide what is now known as intelligent document processing.

So how does OCR work?

As human beings, we rely on three pillars of perception to recognize any object we see, represented by the acronym IPA—integrity, purposefulness, and adaptability. It is by these same principles that an OCR works its magic. This gives the software the ability to see characters as a person would. But how exactly?

  • Firstly, by being able to analyze the structure or framework of your image or document.
  • Then, sorting the information into various elements.
  • And finally, dividing them into words and then finally characters.

An optical character recognition algorithm works in two ways. Through pattern recognition and feature detection. The former uses devices to compare the objects it scans against a catalog of characters stored within the software itself. Feature detection, on the other hand, is the application of ‘rules’ to certain numbers and letters to recognize them within the context of a document or image file. Let’s say there’s a capitalized ‘A’ in your document. It is entered into the catalog as two diagonal lines with another horizontal line connecting them. It is then converted into ASCII code that can be manipulated and edited.

What an OCR can do for your business

Now, let’s get into OCR use cases and why it continues to be such an excellent tool for businesses and organizations of any size or scope. It’s not a secret that data has become an essential commodity in the digital age, and any entity that hopes to leverage technology for its extraction should be in no doubt about the value of a good OCR. Here’s why OCR scanning services should be part of your data processes.

  • Streamlined Access

When you integrate an OCR into your business processes, you’re immediately making significant upgrades to how you access your data. Once the information in images and documents becomes digitized, it becomes infinitely easier to search through high volumes of data. You can also perform these searches before this information is ever stored electronically, and OCR integration in ERP systems has never been easier.

  • Unmatched Accuracy & Interpretation

Not only is your access to data improved with intelligent document processing, but so is the actual quality of the data itself. This also applies to your customers, who can now get more accurate responses to any queries. Validating databases, performing security checks, and easily protecting user data all combine for greater customer service offerings.

  • Better Cost-Efficiency

One of the most valuable benefits of OCRs is their ability to save on data processing costs. It requires no additional tech infrastructure investment because all you’ll ever need is a camera to scan for OCR. Your business will save money on storage, printing, and shipping while being significantly cheaper than traditional data entry methods.

  • More Productivity

Productivity and profitability go hand in hand, and with the introduction of OCR technology to your business, both of these facets receive a significant boost. The amount of paperwork and the time spent handling physical documents is made redundant through digital access to critical information. More time for employees means more important tasks can be completed in the day-to-day.

  • Customer Loyalty & Retention

Another aspect is that your customers will love it just as much as you do. Not only does it increase conversion rates, but it also provides faster service, better communication, and more loyalty. Customers who receive higher service standards are far more likely to keep doing business with you. It’s a simple fact, but one that can never be overlooked as competition increases in the global economy.

Experience superior intelligent document processing from PROVEN Solution

As a trusted partner for growth in organizations of all sizes, PROVEN Solution has an established reputation as a provider of technology and software that makes the difference between survival and success. We combine our expert knowledge of AI and machine learning to offer organizations not just an OCR, but intelligent document processing that goes above and beyond expectations to benefit your business in myriad ways. Talk to us about we can take your data extraction into the future and reap the rewards today.